University athletics to hold Breathe Easy 5K

The 5 km run will raise money for cystic fibrosis research.

Andrew Krammer

The Student Athlete Advisory Committee, along with the University of Minnesota Athletic Department, will hold the fourth annual Breathe Easy 5-kilometer run for cystic fibrosis at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

The race will begin at Coffman Memorial Union and will run a course through campus to raise money for cystic fibrosis research.

âÄúThis is open to anyone in the public,âÄù SAAC member Megan Smith said. âÄúMany local businesses have donated gift cards and the athletic department has donated apparel to be used for prizes.âÄù

Student-athletes from all sports will not only help run the event, but participate in the race as well.

People will have the opportunity to decorate signs to honor those with cystic fibrosis that will be displayed along the course of the race. The event will also include free food, handouts, T-shirts and booths set up for local companies.

âÄúWe usually see 75 to 100 people at the event,âÄù Smith said. âÄúPre-registration is down this year though, which is weird because weâÄôve put more effort into marketing the event than in previous years.âÄù

SAAC has reached out to a multitude of student groups, sororities and fraternities as well as the UniversityâÄôs running club, for support in participating and volunteering in the event, Smith said.

The Minnesota Ragtime Band âÄî a small section of the UniversityâÄôs marching band âÄî will also be performing during the race.

The race was started four years ago by former University of Minnesota student Ben Wegemer, who has a brother with cystic fibrosis and began the event to raise awareness and money for the disease.

âÄúWeâÄôve been able to get the word out through the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation,âÄù Assistant Director of Student-Athlete Affairs Anissa Lightner said, adding that the CF Foundation has promoted the run, as well.

Cystic fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of 30,000 children and adults in the U.S.